How to apply

Usually, we do not specifically advertise our open positions, as there has been a large number of highly qualified applicants, outnumbering the available positions by far and making selection sometimes very difficult.

Hence, if you want to apply for a position at our laboratory, please note the following:


Prospective Postdoctoral Fellows

If you want to become a postdoctoral fellow at our laboratory, you should apply directly, enclosing a statement of your interests, a meaningful summary of your previous achievements, notably publications, an indication of your willingness to apply for grants, and the names of at least 3 references.


Prospective PhD Students

We are currently not hiring any new PhD students. However, PhD students working under another main supervisor can carry out collaborative experiments in  our laboratory. You should explain this in your cover letter.


Prospective Master’s thesis (students from UZH)

If you are already a master’s student at UZH, you find the details in the online course listing (Vorlesungsverzeichnis). Usually, once a year, the groups present their research to potential Master students, and sometimes contacts are also made through practicals (BCH408).


Prospective Master’s thesis (students from ETH)

If you are already a Master’s student at ETH, please apply directly to Prof. Plückthun, providing a detailed transcript (list of lectures and practicals, including all grades), as well details on any previous research experience you may have had.


Prospective Master’s Students from Institutions other than the ETH or UZH

If you are already a Master’s student at another University with a very strong background in biochemistry, we have few places, but great demand. We can accept foreign students for the thesis if they can document excellent grades and prior relevant laboratory experience. You will also need a letter of recommendation.

This assumes that you have completed your Master’s courses and are applying to carry out a Master’s thesis in Prof. Plückthun’s laboratory, and you should apply to him directly.

If you are not already in a Masters program, but are only considering to apply to the Master’s program of UZH, please do not contact Prof. Plückthun, but contact instead the students› mentor (Studienberater) of the Department of Biochemistry: studienberatung’at’



A number of different nationalities work in Plückthun group and at the department in general. Thus, the language of all research seminars is English. Therefore, foreigners do not have to fear that inability to speak German is an impediment. Students write their thesis in English (doctoral, Master’s Bachelor’s), irrespective of their language background. The flip side is that fluency in spoken and written English is a must.

If you want to apply for a position, please send your application including a detailed CV by e-mail to